31 January 2012

Fashion Redemption: Anne Hathaway

Like I say in many of my Fashion Redemption posts, this isn't that bad. Her hair looks lovely, and her accessories are fine if a bit basic. But that dress! It's so shapeless! Annie, you're a beautiful woman with a great figure - why hide it? If you want to look elegant and covered-up, there are more flattering ways to do it.

Here's how I'd restyle Anne for this event.

Shop Now:
Dress $54 // Shoes $32 // Clutch $24 // Earrings $12 // Necklace $16

Check out some prime examples of Anne looking fab.

Pinspiration: Chambray and Pleats

Today's Pinspiration comes as another request from a reader, who is smitten with the chambray and pleats worn by Delmy of Fashion Bananas. And I can't say that I blame her - this is such a chic look that can be worn for daytime or a casual night out. Fabulous.

Pinned here.

Shop Now:
Shirt $27 // Skirt $76 // Belt $32 // Boots $33 // Bag $59 //Earrings $15

See more Pinspiration posts here.

Celebrity Copycat: Taylor Swift Style

I'm so used to seeing Taylor in pale gold sparkly dresses and cutesy skirts - that type of style suits her to a tee. But it's refreshing to see her looking adorably bundled up at Sundance with a cozy coat and fabulous boots.

Shop Now:
Coat $60 // Sweater $28 // Pants $38 // Boots $65 // Hat $31

30 January 2012

You Tell Me: Shopping Habits

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen that, last week, I vowed to give up shopping for a while.

My sister is getting married in Europe this summer, and my husband and I have promised ourselves that we'd pay for our entire trip without using our credit cards. So that means that we have to save some cash.

Now. I shop a lot. Like, a lot. But I was able to convince myself that it was okay because I'm not an expensive shopper. I buy from stores with lower price points. I buy from sale racks (or more often, sale sections of websites). I use coupon codes. And I never, ever, ever put any type of clothes, shoes, accessories, cosmetics, etc. on a credit card. If I don't have the money in cash on my debit card, I don't buy it. Period. So I'm not as irresponsible as that woman in those books I've never read or that movie I never saw, but I'm not as responsible as I should be.

And all of these little things add up.  I started to realize how much money I could save if I wasn't shopping so much.

So, until we've saved enough money for our trip to Europe, no shopping for me. And I'm posting it here because announcing it to you will keep me accountable. Yes, I know that a shopping ban is one of the most clich├ęd things that a fashion blogger can do. But it will be good for me and for my family.

Of course there will be a couple of exceptions:

  • I need to buy some more gym clothes - specifically some sports bras and workout pants. But I view this as a necessity for wellness, not a frivolity.
  • Jason Wu for Target. I know, I know. I'm weak. But I'm not letting that slip by. And, originally, I was going to start my shopping ban after Jason Wu, but then I decided to start it two weeks earlier and just make an exception. This decision has already saved me some money.
  • I will only purchase makeup if it's a staple that I'm running out of. For example, I'm low on foundation and eyebrow pencil, so I'll have to buy some soon. That is it.

It's going to be hard. I spend almost all of my free time on Shopstyle, looking at so many pretty, pretty things for this blog. I'm tempted literally every day. But I'm going to be strong, because I have to be. I've unsubscribed from all of my email sale alerts, which will help.

After we've got our vacation money saved, I'm still going to make some changes to my spending habits:
  • I'm going to allot myself a specific shopping budget, and I'm going to stick to it.
  • If I buy something and don't wear it within a month, I'm going to return it.
Wish me luck!

And now, you tell me: what are your shopping habits? Do you have a monthly budget or any restrictions? What do you splurge on? Have you ever taken a hiatus from shopping? What else can you share? And could I possibly ask any more questions?

Personal Shopper: Netherlands "Non-Wedding"

Now, this is going to be fun, because this look is for my one and only little sister!

My sister and her boyfriend live together in the Netherlands and are getting, well, sort-of married this summer. Technically, they're getting the Dutch version of a civil union. They've been jokingly called the whole to-do a "non-wedding," but they are having a civil ceremony and then a reception, and all of their friends and family will be there.

My sister has never been one to care much about fashion, but her boyfriend definitely is. He actually dresses pretty flamboyantly sometimes (he wore amazing bright blue pants to my wedding), and he's planning on getting a suit made from this Paul Smith Bespoke Stripe fabric.

So my sister wants something that is:

  1. Not white, but...
  2. Special enough that she'll stand out
  3. Something that will go with (or at least not clash with) the suit fabric
  4. Flattering on her body (petite, pear shaped, short-waisted)
  5. And if I know my sister, which I do, she'll want comfy, sensible footwear
So, here you go, little sis. I hope you like it! 

Shop Now:
Dress $100 // Shoes $70 // Fascinator $28 // Earrings $25 // Necklace $25 // Bag $62

Best and Worst Dressed at the SAG Awards

I wasn't able to watch the SAG awards last night (dinner plans) so here is my rushed and half-assed commentary from the red carpet. I will be back in full-force for the Oscars, though.

Best Dressed:

Emily Blunt in Oscar de la Renta - it's a fairly basic dress but the color is divine (my favorite of the night) and it fits her wonderfully

Stacey Keibler in Marchesa - I usually dislike black on the red carpet and I usually dislike Marchesa, but she's rocking this one. If only Georgie boy would actually let her pose alone for five seconds.

Tilda Swinton in Lanvin - This is actually really tame for her. On anyone else, it might be kind of boring, but she looks like a futuristic space queen, which is awesome. 

Emma Stone in Alexander McQueen - Adorable. I love a shorter dress on the RC, even if it is black.

Dianna Agron in Carolina Herrera - Remember what I wrote about Emily Blunt? Same here. Pretty color, pretty if basic dress. Pretty girl. I like the teensy glimpse of purple shoes. 

Jayma Mays in Reem Acra - Fabulous. I don't think I've ever seen her look this good. Again, it's black, but it's super sparkly black, which is always a plus.

Ariel Winter - Super cute, and perfect for someone her age.

Could've been Best Dressed if not for some minor quibbles:

Michelle Williams in Valentino - so, so pretty, until you hit the ankles. Awkward length and bad matchy-matchy shoes.

Jessica Chastain - Beautiful color, beautiful fit, beautiful hair. Would some lipstick and a necklace have killed you?

Worst Dressed:

Lea Michele in Versace - Lea Michele! You are not J-Lo. You are not Beyonce. But you are a beautiful young woman. Stop trying so hard, it's off-putting.

Rose Byrne in Elie Saab - I want to like this because it's different, but it just screams "Elvis Impersonator" to me.

Kaley Cuoco in Romona Keveza - Pretty dress - if you're playing Cinderella at Disneyland. Also, the hair is cute but doesn't go with the dress at all.

Jane Krakowski - "Hi, I'm Jane Krakowski. Have you met my embellished boobs?"

Busy Phillips - This is actually really cute - for brunch with the girls. But it's not special enough for the SAGS.

Heather Morris in Masai Payan - I adore H-mo, so it kills me to tear her down, but this dress is a mess, the shoes look like stripper shoes, and her hair and makeup, while pretty, totally belong with a different look from the neck down.

Jenna Fischer - I know she just had a baby, so she's probably having a hard time dressing her new curves, but couldn't she have come up with something that looks a bit less "mother of the bride?"

Who were your best and worst from last night?

Celebrity Copycat: Nicky Hilton Style

There's nothing like a sunny yellow sweater to really brighten up some dark neutrals. I'm so glad that pops of color are here to stay.

Shop Now:
Sweater $13 // Jeans $75 // Boots $71 // Bag $25 // Sunglasses $14

29 January 2012

Sunday Splurges: Statement Necklaces

When I don't feel like putting a ton of effort into an outfit (and I'm lazy, so that happens a lot), I like to just throw on some basics and then add a bold accessory for interest. These pricey statement necklaces would definitely perk up any uninspired outfit.

Shop Now:
Erickson Beamon Multicolored $1,815 (similar here) // Valentino Crystal Bib $725 (similar here) // Tom Binns Black Beaded $2,135 (similar here) // Lanvin Collar $1,115 (similar here) // Miu Miu Magenta $505 (similar here)

28 January 2012

Pinspiration: Daytime Sparkle

This is actually the perfect look from which to nab some inspiration, because I've been trying to work some sparkle into my daily outfits. See, recently, I've bought a lot of glittery, sequin-y stuff, but I don't really have the lifestyle it requires. So I've been trying to figure out how to work some of that bling into my everyday looks.

This look from Julie of Orchid Grey is perfect - I've got the top and most of the other pieces, so it should be a cinch to recreate.

(pinned here)

Shop Now:
Top $60 // Shirt $24 // Jeans $55 // Shoes $30

27 January 2012

Pinspiration: Flirty Mini

This pin comes via the one and only Nina Garcia, who pinned it to her florals board. From Stockholm Street Style, via The Pursuit Aesthetic.

Phew! That's a lot of sourcing! But it's worth it, because this look is awesome, no?

Shop Now:
Top $40 // Skirt $35 // Shoes $30 // Necklace $28 // Clutch $62 // Watch $22

Making Some Minor Changes

The site might look kind of wonky for a couple of minutes while we make a couple of minor changes. Bear with us!

Personal Shopper: College Graduation

Reader Request

I graduate from college next month and am trying to plan my outfit. I already have a pair of leopard platform pumps because I always admired the trend but dont know what to wear with them. There isn't a dress code but I want to make a real statement when I take that gown off. I wear a size 16. Please, HELP!!!!  

For this very special occasion, here's a beautiful purple dress with statement jewelry. Congrats!

Shop Now:
Dress $70 // Shoes $30 // Clutch $27 // Necklace $39 // Ring $25 // Earrings $20

Celebrity Copycat: Evan Rachel Wood Style

Evan usually favors edgier styles but she looks beautiful in this simple black lace dress. Get her look for less right here!

Shop Now:
Dress $42 // Shoes $45 // Clutch $23 // Ring $15 // Earrings $11

The It List: 1.27.12

Happy Friday ladies!
Enjoy these great links this weekend...
  • suze wears clothes brings us words of inspiration each and every Sunday. I love this week's installment, especially this colorful quote on joy! (find suze wears clothes on twitter!)
  • gs lillian found these adorable "spike" necklaces at Target... pop on by her blog to see what other fun pieces she found - including a few that are perfect for Valentine's Day! (find gs lillian on twitter!)
  • my soul is the sky is back with another great hair tutorial - this one, the 'bohemian side braids' look great on her and have inspired me to try a similar style! (find my soul is the sky on twitter!)
  • live a lot goes for the all black outfit.  Do you ever fall back on this simple outfit formula? It happens to be one of my favorites! Check out her look!
  • rachael really looks stunning in stripes and faux fur.  Then she adds red wellies and a pearl necklace for the win! (find rachael really on twitter!)
  • free to be stacia lee is hosting a giveaway for a gorgeous amethyst necklace. Stop by her blog to enter! (find free to be stacia lee on twitter!)
  • here & now sports the perfect weekend outfit and looks fabulous doing it!  Especially since she had just run a 5K that day!  You go girl! 
  • fabulously average is rocking what she calls "the new neutrals" - and I couldn't agree with her more, they totally are!  What are the "new neutrals"? You'll have to stop by her blog to find out! (find fabulously average on twitter!)
  • behind the dressing room door has the perfect accessory for cold winter days - a bold and colorful scarf!  See how she styled it! (find behind the dressing room door on twitter!)
  • the capital barbie tracks down some absolute darling bowed-tops. I love how feminine and flirty these tops are! (find the capital barbie on twitter!)
  • sweetie pie style takes this mint green maxi dress and styles it three ways that are perfect for late winter into spring! It's so versatile! (find sweetie pie style on twitter!)
  • a fashion fixation introduces us to a new online shop called Vestique - have you heard of it? I love their bold and colorful selection, like this blazer! (find a fashion fixation on twitter!)
  • the tiemann girls are showing off their gorgeous taupe finds from Target!  Taupe never looked so good ladies! (find the tiemann girls on twitter!)
  • stay in the lines makes homemade oreo cookies.  I think I know how I'll be spending a cold, winter Saturday in my near future - baking and eating these! (find stay in the lines on twitter!)
the IT list is produced weekly by Jill of good life - for information on how you can be involved, click here!

26 January 2012

Journey to a Healthy Body, Week Two: A Setback

So, I reached a setback. Already.

I've ended my relationship with Lucille Roberts gym. It had nothing to do with the gym itself. It was more a matter of convenience. The gym was too far from my home and my office, and my trainer and I could never seem to be free on the same day. I wanted to work out as much as possible, but it was too difficult, so our arrangement is over.

Additionally, the past week and a half has been incredibly stressful. And as I've said before, I am a stress eater. And, so, I've been eating pretty badly. My husband is the cook in our home, and his meals are usually pretty healthy, but I've been so busy that I've had to eat a lot of meals on the run. That means fries. Or tacos. Or chicken nuggets.

I got really angry at myself, and I've been really angry for about a week. But tonight, I decided to forgive myself. I just need to get back on the ball.

So, I joined a new gym, one that has one location fifteen minutes from  my office and another ten minutes from my home. I am going to go back onto Weight Watchers, which has worked for me incredibly well. Twice. Counting points is easier for me than worrying about what type of metabolizer I am and keeping track of a do- and do-not-eat list.

And, next time I have a setback (and let's be honest, I totally will), I'm just going to forgive myself and get back to it.

How do you recover from a fitness setback?

Inspired By: The Golden Girls

Everyone still loves the Golden Girls, I know. It was hilarious, clever, and pretty damned edgy for its time. But one thing that was NOT edgy at all was the wardrobe. Not only were they old ladies, but they were old ladies in the 80's in Miami, land of wicker and bright pantsuits and giant shoulder pads and floor-length jackets and loud caftans.

But if you think about it, a lot of this fashion could very easily translate to 2012. See what I mean?

Shop Now:
Necklace $78 // Dress $43 // Blazer $29 // Bag $40 // Shoes $18 // Scarf $18

Wishlist: Tribal Prints

Shop Now:
Ring $75 // Skirt $15 // Shorts $15 // Bag $39 // Scarf $79 // Dress $50

Celebrity Copycat: Rooney Mara Style

Rooney Mara has had a couple of red carpet missteps, but lately, she's been knocking them out of the park! Whoever has been styling her has perfected an edgy-meets-minimalist look that really suits her.

Shop Now:
Top $25 // Skirt $60 // Belt $38 // Shoes $50

25 January 2012

Pinspiration: High-Low

I've been wanting to try a high-low skirt, but I wasn't sure with what to pair it. Now, after seeing Liz of Late Afternoon rock this one, I know that I need to try one ASAP.

Originally from Late Afternoon, pinned here

Shop Now:
Sweater $27 // Skirt $38 // Belt $28 // Shoes $45 // Necklace $44 // Bracelet $11 // Sunglasses $16

Personal Shopper: Bridesmaid Inspiration

Reader Request

I don't know if you do bridesmaid apparel questions, but I figured it's worth a shot: I've got a large  group of 6 ladies who have agreed to stand next to me on my wedding day. I don't want or need them to match and I'd love them to pick out their own dresses which matches their own individual style. The only criteria I have is shades of blue with champagne or metallic accents/accessories. I've been asked to give them some ideas for what I'd like to see them wear. They range in sizes from "a little more to love" to "OMG I hate you, you're so thin." Do you have any suggestions I can pass along?

Here's a roundup of some items that I hope works perfectly for you. I didn't put together a full ensemble for each lady; however, I hope that you and they can get some inspiration from what I've chosen.

Shop Now:
Sash $40 // Ring $12 // Earrings $15 // Tank Dress $37 // One Shoulder Dress $90 // Shoes $50 // Strapless Dress $90 // Clutch $34

Enter to Win a Trip to NY Fashion Week from Kohl's Rock & Republic

Do you remember Rock & Republic jeans? Well, they're coming back this spring, exclusively at Kohl's. To celebrate the launch, Kohls' is offering the chance to win an amazing prize: a trip to NYC for the re-launch and fashion show at Fashion Week, and a Rock & Republic makeover.

How exciting is that? For more information and to enter, click here

And guess what: I'm going too! I'm seriously giddy about this, because I'll be going as well! My first Fashion Week - what will I wear? 

Disclosure: Kohl's provided compensation to me as an incentive to blog about the Rock & Republic launch event.  The opinions expressed herein are those of this author, and they have not been reviewed or approved by Kohl's in advance.

Celebrity Copycat: Emma Stone Style

Sometimes it's hard to keep warm and look chic at the same time, but Emma totally nailed it. How adorable is she?

Shop Now:
Coat $40 // Pants $40 // Shoes $25 // Bag $35 // Scarf $11 // Hat $8

24 January 2012

Fashion Redemption: Chloe Moretz

For the most part, I've really liked Chloe Moretz's red carpet style so far. I've said this before, but it's refreshing when a teenager dresses her age, and not like a cheap tart. And Chloe likes to take risks, which I really appreciate. Unfortunately, this one didn't quite pay off. It's a cute dress, but it's doesn't flatter her and is a big frumpy on her (although I could see another Chloe, la Sevigny, rocking this).

Here is a look that would work much better for the young Miss Moretz.

Shop Now:
Dress $42 // Tights $9 // Shoes $81 // Clutch $40 // Earrings $11

Pinspiration: Tone on Tone

I am so impressed with everything about this outfit: the contrast of the thick sweater against buttery leather, the tone-on-tone colors, the modern but simple accessories. Anh from 9to5Chic really nailed this one!

Shop Now:
Sweater $20 // Skirt $50 // Shoes $77 // Bag $65 // Sunglasses $12

From 9to5Chic, pinned here

Celebrity Copycat: Katharine McPhee Style

Every time I see a celeb in a great sparkly dress, I find myself wishing that I led the kind of lifestyle that required sparkly dresses. Unfortunately, sitting in front of my laptop requires more of a pajamas-type dress code, but if any of you are a member of the glitterati, here's an affordable outfit for you!

Shop Now:
Dress $80 // Shoes $99 // Bracelet $13

23 January 2012

You Tell Me: Your Everyday Beauty Regimen?

I always thought that I was a fairly low-maintenance person when it came to beauty, but I think that maybe I was lying to myself. Because, when I think about it, I use a lot of products. I use a mix of drugstore and high-end items, mostly for my body and face. I used to use a TON of hair products, but now that I get the Coppola Keratin treatment, all I need is their special shampoo and conditioner, with some dry shampoo on days I don't wash my hair. I don't need any styling products, which is amazing.

 Here's my beauty regimen, just for every day (no special occasion items today).

First, in the shower:

Clean & Clear Foaming Cleanser $5 // Coppola Keratin Complex Shampoo & Conditioner $16 ea // Philosophy Pure Grace Shower Gel $22 // Clarisonic Cleansing System $195 // White Rain Conditioner (I use this as shaving cream) $1

Then, after the shower:

Secret Clinical Strength Deodorant $8 // Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer $9 // Batiste Dry Shampoo $5 // Eucerin Intensive Repair Body Lotion $5

On my face:

Smashbox Photofinish Primer $36 // Benefit Boi-ing! Concealer $19 // Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Foundation $26 // NARS Orgasm Blush $27 // Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer $30 // Philosophy Supernatural Eye Palette in Truffle $30 // Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner in Crash $18 // Cover Girl LashExact Mascara $7 // Burts Bees Lip Shimmer in Raisin $6

Now you tell me: what products make it into your everyday beauty routine?

Personal Shopper: Comfortable Business Casual

Reader Request

I will start working in a pediatric clinic where I do developmental work with children as an occupational therapist. As much as I wish, we cannot wear scrubs. Our director asks that we dress "business casual," meaning dress pants/chinos and a "cute" top. 

Now, I have to be able to move, get up and off the floor, lift children, and basically mimic gym and playground activities in an indoor environment. I get a little warm moving around (plus I live in a very warm climate), so light layers and clothes with some give are on the list, but aren't always fashionable. Also, because shoes, jewelry and little touches like belts at the natural waist are not very functional, I need something easy to put together and that moves with me and is somewhat durable, as well as looks great when I speak to parents at the end of the session.  In my everyday life, I love all the special touches, so just having pants, a top and a light layer make it difficult to really make it personal.

Yikes, it sounds like you've got a lot of restrictions! Luckily, I think I can help. A few years back, I had a client in southern Florida and I had to fly down to meet with them twice a month. It took a while, but I finally perfected an outfit formula that was business casual, appropriate for hot weather, comfy enough to wear on the plane, and still stylish.

I stocked up on cheap dress pants from NY&Co (most of them have stretch and come in many different colors) and paired them with lightweight tops, cute flats and minimal jewelry. See what I mean below.

Shop Now:
Top $20 // Pants $24 // Shoes $20 // Earrings $35 // Bag $46 // Headband $11

Celebrity Copycat: Rihanna Style

I've been all about the tribal prints lately, so when I saw this dress on Rihanna, I was immediately smitten. I love this whole look on her - it's edgy but still soft. Nice work, Ri-ri!

Shop Now:
Dress $84 // Shoes $50 // Bag $46 // Bracelets $13 // Ring $4 // Necklace $29

22 January 2012

Sunday Splurges: Bright as Yellow

Yellow has recently become one of my favorite colors. Here are some spendy items (and some frugal counterparts) in cheerful, sunny yellow.

Shop Now:
Burberry Trench $1,495 (similar here, here) // Marc Jacobs Belt $1,250 (similar here) // Christian Dior Sunglasses $404 (similar here) // Jil Sander Tote $990 (similar here, here) // Giambattista Valli Dress $2,289 (similar here, here) // Alexander McQueen Sweater $975 (similar here) // Brian Atwood Pumps $755 (similar here, here)

21 January 2012

Pinspiration: Black and Brown

A few weeks ago, I was doing a bit of year-end research with my blog analytics, and I discovered that the most-viewed post on What the Frock? in 2011 was a post that I didn't even write. Oof.

It was a guest post from my friend Christiana of US meets UK While I was on my honeymoon in Alaska, she featured some of her favorite pins; you can see the post here. One of the photos on Christiana's post got re-pinned SO MANY TIMES that it ended up bringing me thousands and thousands of visits from Pinterest last year. So thanks for the blog traffic, C!

In all seriousness, though, since it was such a popular image, I figured I'd recreate it. It's a simple but stunning look that you could wear just about anywhere: the office, a party, brunch with friends, etc. The photo originally appeared on the French blog Les Composantes, and was reipinned a gazillion times since, including right here.

Shop Now:
Dress $35 // Belt $48 // Boots $98 // Clutch $34 // Glasses $95

20 January 2012

Pinspiration: Pale Neutrals

This edition of Pinspiration is a request from a reader who has been coveting this look for quite a while. I dig it as well, because it's versatile. The lovely lady in the photo looks like she's ready for warm weather, but if you replace the teeny skirt with a pair of skinny jeans and you have a simple but chic fall look. Pinned here, originally from Lookbook.nu.

Shop Now:
Blazer $53 // Top $20 // Skirt $20 // Boots $32 // Watch $25 // Sunglasses $32

Personal Shopper: Fur Vest

Reader Request

I got a faux fur vest for Christmas (it looks a lot like this one) and I have no idea what I should wear it with. Any suggestions?

I have a very similar vest, and I was also struggling with how to pair it. But I found that, with a bulky statement piece like this, simplicity is key. Like this:

Shop Now:
Vest $85 // Top $12 // Jeans $50 // Belt $6 // Boots $34 // Sunglasses $8 // Earrings $11 // Bag $50